"The Choice is Yours." The previous statement is one that is so often forgotten, especially when it comes to the business of living life. In the midst of the daily grind that most people move through, with the competing demands of work schedules, family commitments, personal needs and perceived wants, it's easy to abdicate responsibility, simply allowing "life" to dictate how things unfold. After all, when you’re informed that your job is being phased out, or that you’ve been diagnosed with an illness, it’s far easier to react to what’s been handed to you from a default position, rather than respond from a place of conscious choice.
But there is a cost to this way of living. When you live your life by chance instead of choice, you lose a sense of liberation and personal power.

Let me clarify what I mean by this: in a nutshell, what you need to remember, is that life doesn't just happen to you. Certainly, you can allow life to just happen to you, if that's what you wish. But what is your life like when you simply react to what's handed to you? What happens when you don’t avail yourself of the opportunity to take an active hand in how your life unfolds? What might be different if you responded to life instead? If you chose how things would be for you? My experience, both directly, and vicariously through what I've witnessed in my work with clients, tells me that choosing your actions, choosing your thoughts, choosing your emotions, indeed choosing your LIFE results in a more empowered, balanced, and ultimately fulfilling experience.

Now, it is imperative that you understand; "empowered", "balanced" and "fulfilling" doesn't mean that you won't have challenges. Life is inherently challenging, no doubt about it. The act of “choosing” doesn't mean that life will automatically transform into a bowl of pit-free cherries. The pits will still be there. Choosing your emotions doesn't mean that you will never experience anger, sadness, frustration or overwhelm again. All emotions are a vital part of the human experience. There is a world of difference, however, between the feeling of sadness that is CHOSEN, versus sadness that is simply allowed to overcome your being. There is freedom and liberation in knowing that you have chosen to experience sadness, anger or even happiness. And a life of freedom and choice is the ultimate empowered state.

So, as you move forward, let me ask you: what do you long for? What intentions and goals are you setting for yourself? More importantly, what will you choose – whether in the realm of actions, emotions, or circumstances – in order to see these intentions and goals fulfilled? This is the question that I invite you to ponder throughout the remainder of 2010. May it be a year of life lived and experienced through choices...the choices that matter…the choices made by YOU.

Author's Bio: 

Gail Barker is principal of Stellar Coaching & Consulting, a certified professional life coach & motivational speaker. Considered to be the “go-to expert on life balance for women leaders”, she is also co-author of The Control Freak’s Guide to Living Lightly. To inquire about her coaching services, arrange for her to speak at your next event, or have your questions answered you may contact her at info@stellarcc.com.